Tollywood actor Anshuman Gupta turns restaurateur
Hunky model and actor Anshuman Gupta began his Tollywood debut some years back with a sizzling pairing with Rituparna Sengupta in Trishna, the Bengali version of Hollywood movie Body Heat that had also inspired Bipasha-John starrer Jism. But now Anshuman is in a new avataar as a restaurateur. He owns the new Italian eatery Paparazzi in Kolkata's Sector V, the IT hub. IBNS correspondent Shreejata Niyogi catches up with the strapping actor and entrepreneur for a chat on his new venture. Excerpts:
How did you come up with the idea of a restaurant?
The idea of opening up with an eatery was not mine. It was my father's dream. I always wanted to become an actor, when I became one, then I realized that my father also have a dream and I thought that it is time to do something for my dad. That's how this eatery was launched.
What is the specialty of this restaurant?
The specialty of this place is undoubtedly Italian, but, we are also providing our customers with Indian and Chinese cuisine. One of our special items is fondue. We have Paparazzi Fondue, Fondue Originale, Enormi Nachos and Chocolate Fondue. There is also one special flour coated Biriyani.
Do you face competition for choosing Sector 5? After all there are many food joints here.
Well, no. Though there are many eateries in this area, very few of them or may be none provide such authentic Italian cuisine. In this building alone there is a KFC outlet and other food joints, but none of them have Italian cuisine. More than being worried about competition, we are concentrating on the food that we will provide to our customers.
Is it an advantage to open up an eatery in this area?
Yes, definitely it is an advantage to open up an eatery in an area like this. In Sector 5 there are lots of corporate houses. Many corporate executives come here to have their lunch. For the corporate executives, we have introduced a combo meal pack. They are in hurry as they have to rush back to their offices. So we thought of providing them with special meal pack.
What do you think about the food market in Kolkata?
Well, the market over here is extremely good. People of the city are foodie by nature. They love to experiment with food and love to try different things. I think this place have the best concept of taste. So, I think this city is the best market for opening up an eatery.
Box: Paparazzi chief chef Kaustav Pandey on the food at the joint:
What is the specialty here?
Among the Italian items Paparazzi fondue is our special item. It is Italian herbs mixed in cheese. Among the Indian cuisine there is special flour coated Biriyani. We also have Chinese food items. In dessert, we have Tiramishu, Blueberry Cheesecake and Mango Cheesecake.
People are now health-conscious.
For the health conscious, we have included items like Great Abs Salad and Flat Bread Pizza. Great Abs Salad has honey and mustered dressing and is healthy. We also have Flat Bread Pizza, which is thin and crispy Pizza with low calories.
What is the difference between the foodies of Kolkata and other cities:
People of this city are really foodies. They love to try out different food. We receive good reviews here, which indicate that Kolkatans keenly judge the food and sometimes they want to know the recipes. It was not evident in other cities of the country.
Is there any original food item?
Yes. I try out new recipes. There is a mocktail item named LDVE, which is a fine mixture of mint, soda, and lemon.
We have recently started home delivery for the customers of Saltlake and Raharhat area. We are also planning to introduce 'Happy Hours' from 4-7 p.m. for our customers. We are also planning to open up a bar before Pujas.